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DCW orders FIR against police officer in sexual harassment case

Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) has flayed the Delhi Police over its shoddy investigation into the alleged sexual harassment of 24 women constables by an inspector. In a notice to Delhi Police Commissioner Alok Kumar Verma, the Chairperson of DCW Swati Maliwal has demanded registration of FIR against the accused and reconstitution of the internal complaints committees for sexual harassment at the headquarters and districts. 

“The actions of Delhi Police violate the spirit of the Prevention of Sexual Harassment at Workplace Act. The internal complaint committee which investigated into the matter does not have an external member which is mandatory as per law,” said Swati Maliwal in the letter. 

As per the Prevention of Sexual Harassment at Workplace Act, 2013, the internal complaint committee shall have a minimum of four members and an external member. “The law has mandated the presence of an external member in the Internal Complaints Committee to promote transparency and fairness in their functioning,” argued Maliwal.  She further demanded the reconstitution of the internal complaints committee at the level of PHQ which should order a fresh inquiry into the case. Maliwal also demanded the revocation of transfer orders of the complainants. “Delhi Police have been asked to submit an action taken report on the recommendations of the Commission, latest within two weeks,” said Maliwal. 

According to the DCW, out of 24 only one constable was called by the internal inquiry committee for statement. 

“The victim informed that she along with two other women constables were transferred from the police but the inspector was retained. It’s against the law which mandates the transfer of the accused,” contended Maliwal. 

She also rejected the argument of the DCP Vigilance that as no cognisable offence was committed, FIR was not registered against accused SB Yadav. “The statement of the victim is itself explanatory and amounts to cognizable offence,” she added. 
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